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The importance of teaching your kids about cybersecurity

We had been discussing various cyber scams and going back all the way to when I received my first Nigeria mail… yes mail not email, an actually stamped envelope, typed on a typewriter from no one other than Prins Ali Baba himself… (chuckles allowed)

As the discussion drew to an end a colleague of ours shared a tale that emphasized that it is not enough that we ourselves are aware of cybersecurity, we need to instruct and teach friends, spouses and our kids as well.

“My son was hacked”, he said with a mischieveous smile the way only way he can smile and be serious at the same time.

Our ears stiffened.

“Hacked ?”

“Well in the social engineering way”

He then told us how someone had chatted up his son in an online game, luckily it was a free game using virtual currency etc. or things could have been more bleak.

But basically it had gone like this - The individual had told his son about how he could help him get up one level, those of you having kids, friends and spouses understand the importance of leveling so his son complied with what seemed like a totally simple request.

Just change your password to the following XFWE#“¤%”%SuperCharge log out for 10 minutes and then log back in again, then your character will gain maximum level experience and go up a level.

It sounded too good to be true - and it was.

In those 10 minutes his character was ripped for all virtual stuff amassed and he could with a long face tell his father about what had happened.

Our colleagues son learned - luckily in a soft way how badly you can fare on the web and how important keeping your password private is, not just potentially for your own sake but potentially also for others, for it could have been any system that the intruder could have asked for the password for, heck he could even have asked for remote access to log into our colleagues sons computer and from there created a beachhead from which to attack the company you work for.

With this story in mind I encourage you all to have a chat with your spouses, friends and children about password security, for the kids this is an easy lesson to understand, for the adults, well the story is equally fair for they will be able to extrapolate the consequences should an important system be breached and their home bank or company passwords etc. be exposed to malignant persons lurking on the web.

cybersecurity_for_kids_and_the_rest_of_us.txt · Last modified: 2012/03/09 10:43 (external edit)